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Wow, what is this?!

 
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Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:28:30 PM   
Canoerebel


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Can anybody identify this? It's German, World War II era, and looks like a whopping big gun, but I don't know anything else about it.




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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:33:54 PM   
CarnageINC


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Dora?  German rail gun 800 mm and a crew of 500 men I believe.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:37:53 PM   
AW1Steve


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You just beat me to it! Your Google/yahoo! is obviously faster than mine!

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:45:06 PM   
Canoerebel


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Was that thing every used in action?  I would've been running the other way.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:48:21 PM   
CarnageINC


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I just knew off the top of my head   I believe only 80 combat rounds were fired at the soviets in Svetepol somethingy...or was it only 20 rounds???  Complete waste of resources, money and men!  Thanks Hitler...you smuck.


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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:49:43 PM   
Canoerebel


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quote:

ORIGINAL: CarnageINC
I just knew off the top of my head   I believe only 80 combat rounds were fired at the soviets in Svetepol somethingy.  Complete waste of resources, money and men!  Thanks Hitler...you smuck.




Okay, but it sure must've been impressive on review and parade. Would've bumped morale a few notches on the homefront even if it was a giant pink elephant on the battlefield.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:51:05 PM   
mdiehl

 

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German artillery crews were known to chant "Grond! Grond!" when preparing to fire.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:51:51 PM   
Q-Ball


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I knew about the gun, but when I looked it up again, I didn't realize they actually thought about building a SELF PROPELLED VERSION! Only 1500 tons. Why not just put a Destroyer on tracks and wheel that around?

It was drawn up, but cooler heads prevailed.....

No word on if a turreted version was considered




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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:53:27 PM   
mdiehl

 

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Soviet forces were known to defeat the tracked version by smashing their GEVs into the treads.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:53:27 PM   
CarnageINC


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Yes your probably right, but all that for morale and PR....my god what a effort!  Those Germans sure did build things big...You should see the 'Maas' tank they were trying to build, couldn't even go over the biggest bridges in Europe let alone a muddy field..LOL

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:53:59 PM   
CarnageINC


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There it is!

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:55:45 PM   
CarnageINC


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They would have to paint a "BOMB ME PLEASE" sign on that thing!

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 9:56:59 PM   
Canoerebel


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Q-Ball

I Why not just put a Destroyer on tracks and wheel that around?





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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 10:09:54 PM   
topeverest

 

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here is more on it

http://www.5ad.org/gun.htm

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 10:44:25 PM   
John Lansford

 

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Dora was an 800mm cannon that required a battalion of men to operate.  It was used only once, during the siege of Sevastopol, and fired only about 80 rounds against the Soviet fortifications.  It was supported by a dozen railroad tracks and was moved on several trains in pieces.  It also required an antiaircraft battalion for protection from air attack. 

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 11:02:05 PM   
Canoerebel


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According to the link provided by topeverest, the gun was used several times including the Siege of Sevastopol and the Warsaw Getto uprising.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/9/2010 11:47:23 PM   
tblersch

 

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According to Hogg, one or the other of Gustav and Dora (yes, there were two) were used at Sevastopol, Stalingrad, and Leningrad, and probably not at Warsaw (more likely the slightly-less-insane 60cm siege howitzers). Gustav (which was the gun at Sevastopol, not Dora) fired maybe 300 shots total before the barrel had to be relined.

Also required an hour to reload, and a quadruple-line rail spur to be built as a firing emplacement. Each, in resources and manpower, cost about as much as two Tiger tank companies. Amazing piece of technology, but a seriously stupid weapon.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 12:57:00 AM   
Shark7


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Guns such as this one really only have a psychological effect, their actual combat worth is negligible. Still running up a gun that is basically twice the size of the 16" guns on the Iowa Class and firing at targets from 25 miles away is bound to have an effect on enemy morale.

That thing might have been worth a lot more if built into a hardened bunker on the Atlantic wall...it could reach out and touch the covering BBs on D-Day if it had been.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 1:13:00 AM   
Alfred

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Q-Ball

Only 1500 tons. Why not just put a Destroyer on tracks and wheel that around?





Nah, Hitler would not have been interested in a destroyer on tracks. Now a heavy cruiser or a battleship, that would have been different because they would have had armour plating, unlike the destroyer.

You can see how much importance he placed on building equipment which was invulnerable to enemy fire in his keen support for the Maus project, and the disproportionate importance placed on the contruction of Tiger tanks.

Alfred

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 1:40:19 AM   
wdolson

 

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There is a 1/35 scale kit of this gun available: http://www.armorama.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=SquawkBox&file=index&req=viewtopic&topic_id=102439&page=1

I have read that it required laying double track where ever it went.  To get the thing to Sevastapol, they had to run double track across Russia and only run it on certain double track lines in Germany.

It was a pretty insane concept.

I have read the Germans were also working on a rail gun at Calais that would have been able to shell London.  In the run up to D-Day, some critical components were destroyed rendering it useless, but the Allies were unaware of it's existence until the hill side it was built into was over run and captured.

Bill


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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 2:24:45 AM   
JeffK


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shark7

Guns such as this one really only have a psychological effect, their actual combat worth is negligible. Still running up a gun that is basically twice the size of the 16" guns on the Iowa Class and firing at targets from 25 miles away is bound to have an effect on enemy morale.

That thing might have been worth a lot more if built into a hardened bunker on the Atlantic wall...it could reach out and touch the covering BBs on D-Day if it had been.


But they would have had to guess correctly the landing beaches, and the Wermacht & its leaders were not that good at guessing the DDay landing site.

In one of AH's brighter moments we might have seen it buil at Tromsofjord!

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 2:46:19 AM   
Menser

 

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Actually Wdolson, they were working on something much bigger. The V3 concept at a facility at Mimoyecques, near Calais. A 25 Gun monstrosity that was kept in check by British Tallboys. German historian video documentary in the link (In German of course).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97nyIePE07o

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 3:04:36 AM   
John 3rd


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mdiehl

German artillery crews were known to chant "Grond! Grond!" when preparing to fire.


I about spewed my tea when I read this entry! Suddenly saw a burning city and about a bajillion Orcs!



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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 3:07:13 AM   
Fishbed


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shark7

That thing might have been worth a lot more if built into a hardened bunker on the Atlantic wall...it could reach out and touch the covering BBs on D-Day if it had been.


With a one-hour reload rate, they'd better be outstanding marksmen or have laser-guided shells

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 3:15:21 AM   
John 3rd


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If you're are firing a 32" Rifle then I don't really think you need laser-targeting!  Could you imagine the crater?!!!

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 3:28:06 AM   
wdolson

 

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Aiming the thing would have been very difficult if built into a bunker.  The field of fire would have been very narrow.  Might have been able to scare the hell out of some sailors with even not so near misses.  A 31 inch shell would make a large splash when it hit the water.

Bill


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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 8:59:01 AM   
Grollub


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quote:

ORIGINAL: mdiehl

German artillery crews were known to chant "Grond! Grond!" when preparing to fire.

Ooohh, a Fineous Fingers reference. That's rare.

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 3:50:46 PM   
mdiehl

 

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quote:

Now a heavy cruiser or a battleship,


Sure. But then he would never have allowed the Wehrmacht to deploy it. You know, a White Elephant In Being is more useful than a White Elephant At the Bottom Of The Sea errm. A Flying White Elepha.... um. OK, a White Elephant In Being is more valuable than a pile of White Elephant Steaks.

A Laser Shark though....

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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 4:26:20 PM   
viberpol


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Canoerebel
According to the link provided by topeverest, the gun was used several times including the Siege of Sevastopol and the Warsaw Getto uprising.


Actually, the use of Dora during the Warsaw uprising(s) is not confirmed. Probably it was 60-cm Karl Gerät 040 that have been used. But...... two days ago the workers prepping the National Stadium in Warsaw for EURO 2012 have found a dud of a diameter of 80 centimetres, so... :D

Dora was planned for different targets. Germans thought that they'd eventually have to go through the Maginot Line.
Such a giant gun was better off killing the French forts from the distance, than fighting the naval vessels during invasion in Normandy.


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RE: Wow, what is this?! - 2/10/2010 4:49:01 PM   
Frank


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Don´t know, but wasn´t one of those used shelling the beachhead at Anzio?


Btw, The source http://www.5ad.org/gun.htm is wrong. It wasn´t captured in Metzendorf but in Metzenhof, a small village near Grafenwöhr. There was a training area before the US Army used it.

http://www.battlefield-travel.com/site/2188263389893456/startseite/reisen__tagestouren/reisen/krim_-_verlorene_siege/historische_details/eisenbahngeschuetz_dora/


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